Buckminster Fuller, talking to the New Yorker in 1966, quoted in this article by Elizabeth Kolbert:
"I made up my mind . . . that I would never try to reform man—that’s much too difficult. What I would do was to try to modify the environment in such a way as to get man moving in preferred directions."
That's what this research is all about. Design as trimtab, perhaps, with all the debate, decisions, multidisciplinarity and implementation issues that implies.
Many thanks to Rick Thomas for sending me the quote.
"I think he’s [Fuller] been highly influential as an iconoclastic spirit, who never accepted that the boundaries between disciplines were anything other than something to be climbed over or circumvented in some way. To me that’s not so much a heroic stance as much as a very practical way to proceed in the world today. That’s also why he pre-staged a lot of what’s going on now."